Financial report

Holland Casino expects gains for H2 following reopenings in June, loss in H1

All 14 Holland Casino branches are now operating, although at limited capacity.
2021-09-23
Netherlands
Reading time 2:30 min
The Dutch state-owned company, forced to close for more than 5 months due to measures against the pandemic, posted an anticipated €64.8 million loss for the first half of the year. As its 14 branches reopened on June 5, the operator now expects positive results for H2, while also seeing a potential offer of iGaming as of October 1, following an application for a license.

Holland Casino is preparing for recovery after a rough first half of the year, having been forced to close for more than 5 months due to measures taken against the COVID-19 pandemic.

As anticipated by the Dutch state-owned company, the extended closure had a negative impact on its financial results for the first half of the year. But as its 14 branches have been operating again since June 5, the operator now expects to post positive results for the second half of 2021.

Turnover achieved in the month of June shows that Holland Casino will soon be able “to operate in a healthy manner” again. Moreover, after having completed “necessary restructuring”, the company expects to become a more efficient and agile organization, according to a press statement released on Wednesday.

Turnover for H1 2021 posted a low €28.8 million. Net results for tax purposes amounted to a loss of €64.8 million, compared to a loss of €37.8 million over the same period in 2020, in which the company remained open for several months. The negative result includes the government support through the NOW scheme.

“Although Coronavirus also hit our company head-on in the first half of 2021, notably our anniversary year in which we celebrate 45 years in business, we still look ahead with confidence,” said CEO Erwin van Lambaart. “All in all, Netherlands was deprived of legal casino offer for almost a year, but now that the measures are disappearing little by little, recovery is in sight.”

According to the CEO, resilience and dedication from the company’s staff, as well as the general support measures taken by the government and a clear strategic investment vision for the future, are contributing to make Holland Casino a strong organization, ready for recovery.

“We see bright spots in the potential offer of online games of chance as of October 1, for which we have applied for a license, and the opening of our new world-class casino branches in Venlo and Utrecht,” added van Lambaart.

CFO Ruud Bergervoet considers that having sufficient liquid assets in the past six months was key to the company getting through the difficult period of closure. That, along with the NOW scheme, the deferral of tax payments, strict cost control measures and tight operation management, led to the company being able “to safeguard the continuity” of its operations over the past year and a half.

“The significant tax debt of €190.5 million is offset by a strong liquidity position without bank debt,” explained Bergervoet. “We are therefore considering paying off this tax debt more quickly if no new Coronavirus measures are introduced and the recovery actually continues. The results after June are promising in that regard.”

Despite all branches now being open, certain pandemic measures are still being enforced, and Holland Casino is receiving guests at limited capacity in its gambling venues. The company expects that these measures will be phased out, with the hope to open at full capacity and without restrictions “towards autumn.”

“We are also looking forward to the reintroduction of poker, live bingo and our NXT zones so that gaming can really be experienced together again,” added van Lambaart. “We also hope to be able to offer our bars and restaurants after midnight, which currently all close at midnight.”

As the company is celebrating its anniversary on October 1, it hopes it will be “special” and expects to receive the license to offer online gaming by then.

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